Steve Caplin on tech going wrong, with the Notre Dame fire, with the BT Tower displaying a Windows 7 error message and with Amazon's five star reviews for unknown brands. Also a bicycle that isn't a bicycle (there's no seat!), a new Helvetica font and the rescue of 500,000 music tracks from MySpace, thanks to a decade-old academic study.
Steve Caplin on the mother and daughter rescued by police use of the What3Words app, speed limiters on cars, wireless charging for electric taxis, French car alcolocks, the meatless Burger King Whopper, the autotune for karaoke singers, the weight of the Milky Way (1.5 trillion solar masses) and contraceptive jewellery.
Steve Caplin takes a look at vending machines in Canary Wharf dispensing short stories, Apple's new credit card, a chance to be the voice of Virgin Trains' talking toilet, a wearable drum kit, less stressed laboratory mice, acoustic metamaterial and an AI system to train violinists.
Steve Caplin looks forward to contactless cards which have built-in fingerprint scanners. He also tells of a new way to send large files, a computerised landscape artist, a pedal-assisted car that can reach 120mph, how facial recognition can lead to happier pigs, a new mono-wheel scooter, a drone with flapping wings, a Steinway that will let you record yourself and why hipsters and other anti-conformists end up looking the same.
Steve Caplin gets excited by the prospects of Google's new cloud-based gaming platform, to be delivered through the Chrome browser. He also discusses the new Amazon Kindle entry model, the Myspace blunder that will make Myspace even more obscure than it had been before, James Bond's electric car, a bizarre drinks cooler, a cheesemaker that wasn't and what the ONS's inflation basket means for rabbits and smart speakers amongst other things.
Steve Caplin salivates over a jet-powered flying motorbike as well as a 5-seat flying car with massive range and speed - if it works. Shark denticles could help us improve aerodynamics. Citymapper is offering discounted London travel passes. Ikea is to sell pollutant-resistant curtains. There's an exploding Kalashnikov drone, mice that can see in the dark and a camping torch which would make a Swiss Army Knife envious. And Steve explains why using his Swiss Army Knife meant he couldn't use is Swiss Army Knife for some time afterwards!
Steve Caplin looks at a phone that folds, another that has six cameras and one (a weighty one) with batteries that last for weeks. There's an electric 2-seater car with built-in 5G, another electric car that charges 80% in less than 5 minutes. After the ice bucket and mannequin challenge, there's now the cheese challenge. There are self-aware fish and dolls resembling dead partners for the bereaved.
Steve Caplin is impressed that Elon Musk was so horrified by a fake text generator that he refused to allow it to be released. He also examines what happened to the company that enabled oldies to be injected with youngsters' blood. He also majors on a company converting old Minis to run on electricity, a drone-netting grenade and a beautiful-looking system for growing fruit and vegetables indoors.
Steve Caplin looks at Samsung's new phones, including one far more expensive even than Apple's top of the range model. He also laments the loss of a project aiming to send people to Mars, though there's another planning a space station with gravity. For those looking for something new in dating, try an app that matches the contents of your fridges. Or perhaps a peanut butter pump is what you need. Or a cocktail-maker using capsules from coffee machine makers Keurig.
Steve Caplin marks, but does not mourn, the end of Google+, due to close in April. He also looks at how you can sample pufferfish sushi without the risk of instant death, a survey helping drive morality to be built into driverless cars, sticking plasters that won't be as painful to remove, a sail for bicycles, an impressive pocket phone stabiliser, a weight loss device, why eating clay might achieve the same result and how some people can access Amazon's Alexa in a very retro way.